31 Fun Jobs That Pay $20 an Hour or More with Little School
Millions of people enjoy fun jobs that pay $20 an hour or more—without having spent any longer than one or two years in college or trade school. And you can become one of them.
Enjoyable jobs that pay 20 dollars an hour or more are a lot more plentiful than you might imagine. They can be found across many different industries. And they demonstrate that fun and good-paying possibilities exist for almost anyone with the motivation to pursue them.
That's true whether you're an outgoing people person, a technology buff, an aspiring creative artist, someone who likes helping others in need, someone who enjoys hands-on work, or a combination of these. In fact, many of the best-paying and most enjoyable jobs—ones that don't require much post-secondary education—now exist in career sectors like design, the media and digital arts, technology, health care, and the skilled trades.
Top Jobs That Pay $20 an Hour and Up
Below are 31 truly engaging jobs that pay 20 dollars an hour or more, on average, and are relatively quick to train for. Several of them are even among the fastest-growing jobs in America. Check out the following categories to find some high-paying careers that might interest you:
Of course, you might want even more good-paying options to consider. So it's worth investigating some careers that pay just a little less, on average. That's why this article also features 30 jobs that pay $15 an hour or more.
(Note: Wage and salary data is from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' 2015 Occupational Employment Statistics. And job growth data, where included, is from the bureau's 2014 to 2024 projections in the 2016-17 edition of the Occupational Outlook Handbook.)
This job is terrific for those who enjoy using their hands, want real respect as a professional, and are intrigued by the thought of interacting with all kinds of other people while contributing to their health and well-being.
- Average wage—$34.96 per hour / $72,720 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $47.33 per hour / $98,440 yearly
- Job growth—19 percent
Imagine being able to use ultrasound technology to see what's happening inside the human body in a way that's safe and fascinating. Now imagine doing that everyday to help pregnant women and many other types of medical patients receive the best care possible.
- Average wage—$34.08 per hour / $70,880 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $46.82 per hour / $97,390 yearly
- Job growth—26 percent
Almost everyone today gets multiple x-rays taken over the courses of their lives. Radiologic imaging is simply one of the most widespread diagnostic technologies used in healthcare. As someone who takes those x-rays, you can do a world of good for others.
- Average wage—$28.13 per hour / $58,520 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $39.26 per hour / $81,660 yearly
- Job growth—8.7 percent
What if you had the power to help sick, injured, or otherwise disabled people take care of themselves, return to work, or participate more fully in their hobbies and social lives? And what if you could do that every day? That's what this gratifying vocation is all about.
- Average wage—$28.05 per hour / $58,340 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $37.54 per hour / $78,080 yearly
- Job growth—43 percent
Conducting diagnostic testing on people's hearts and circulatory systems is often cited as one of the healthcare sector's most fulfilling career paths. Training in this field is a great way to make big contributions to people's health while ensuring your own job satisfaction.
- Average wage—$26.97 per hour / $56,100 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $41.91 per hour / $87,170 yearly
- Job growth—22 percent
Help injured and disabled people regain or increase their physical mobility or range of motion. This active, fulfilling, and in-demand healthcare vocation is often a real joy to be a part of.
- Average wage—$26.56 per hour / $55,250 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $36.99 per hour / $76,940 yearly
- Job growth—41 percent
This healthcare occupation is great for people who are fascinated by medical surgeries and the instruments and procedures involved in making them a success. As somebody who helps prepare operating rooms or assists surgeons, you could feel the pride of knowing you make a tangible difference every day.
- Average wage—$22.09 per hour / $45,940 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $30.48 / $63,410 yearly
- Job growth—15 percent
Some people just have a way of making friends with almost anyone they meet. Your outgoing personality could give you a real advantage in selling innovative products or powerful services to the people who can benefit from them.
- Average wage—$29.98 per hour / $62,360 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $54.60 per hour / $113,570 yearly
Take advantage of your warm and approachable personality by helping property sellers and buyers achieve positive real estate transactions. It's a job with a lot of variety and opportunities to meet and delight fascinating people.
- Average wage—$28.08 per hour / $58,410 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $53.16 per hour / $110,560 yearly
Legal & Criminal Justice:
Does the thought of helping people locate lost relatives or solve other kinds of mysteries intrigue you? This field lets you put your powers of research and surveillance to the test as you find answers for people who are often overjoyed when you succeed.
- Average wage—$25.41 per hour / $52,840 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $40.96 per hour / $85,190 yearly
For people who are intrigued by the thought of working in a law office and helping attorneys achieve justice for deserving clients, this type of career can really satisfy. Plus, it's an option that frequently comes with a lot of engaging job tasks.
- Average wage—$25.19 per hour / $52,390 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $37.99 per hour / $79,010 yearly
Skilled Trades & Technology:
Help design and build the next phase of our modern world. Engineers of every variety rely on the skills of technicians who have a strong interest in being part of innovative leaps forward in areas like electronics, industrial machinery, large-scale construction, and many others.
- Average wage—$30.20 per hour / $62,820 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $45.24 per hour / $94,100 yearly
Get up close to the advanced flying machines you're inspired by, and help repair or maintain their engines or other important systems. The aviation industry is full of opportunities for skilled helicopter and airplane mechanics.
- Average wage—$28.92 per hour / $60,160 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $42.81 per hour / $89,050 yearly
Aviation electronics is another fascinating area of the aircraft service sector that requires people with specialized skills. Much of the field involves installing, testing, maintaining, and fixing the advanced cockpit technologies used by pilots for things like navigation and weather tracking.
- Average wage—$28.94 per hour / $60,200 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $42.10 per hour / $87,570 yearly
15. Commercial Diver
Here's one for the more adventurous types. Why not work in a trade that lets you go under water day in and day out. With advanced scuba gear, you'll get to dive into oceans, lakes, or rivers to help install, build, or fix different kinds of large structures and underwater equipment.
- Average wage—$26.27 per hour / $54,640 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $42.53 per hour / $88,470 yearly
- Job growth—37 percent
This trade has a long history of providing people with satisfying, lucrative, and stable careers. After all, the pipes and equipment that give us access to clean water or other liquids (or gases) are fundamental to our way of life. When they break, who else are you going to call?
- Average wage—$26.49 per hour / $55,100 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $43.13 per hour / $89,720 yearly
- Job growth—12 percent
As the need for reliable electricity continues to grow, so does the need for qualified tradespeople with the ability to ensure we all have safe access to it. But that's just one reason why a lot of electricians absolutely love what they do.
- Average wage—$26.73 per hour / $55,590 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $42.37 per hour / $88,130 yearly
- Job growth—14 percent
Skilled tradespeople in the renewable energy sector are at the real leading edge of human progress. And working on wind turbines, in particular, is a fun and active way to contribute toward building a cleaner and more sustainable world.
- Average wage—$25.50 per hour / $53,030 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $34.53 per hour / $71,820 yearly
- Job growth—108 percent
With the growing use of complex or automated equipment in factories and other industrial settings, highly skilled mechanics are needed more than ever. Plus, this trade can be very enjoyable since it keeps you active as well as mentally engaged.
- Average wage—$24.75 per hour / $51,470 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $36.22 per hour / $75,340 yearly
The large mobile machines used in sectors like construction and mining don't take care of themselves. So that gives you the opportunity to become someone who gets to work up close with impressive heavy equipment like bulldozers, cranes, conveyors, and graders.
- Average wage—$24.08 per hour / $50,080 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $34.41 per hour / $71,570 yearly
21. HVAC Mechanic
This hands-on trade is known for opportunities that involve plenty of interesting work. After all, the heating and cooling of today's indoor spaces is achieved by the use of an increasing variety of different technologies. And they all require qualified technicians to install them and keep them operating efficiently.
- Average wage—$22.78 per hour / $47,380 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $34.47 per hour / $71,690 yearly
- Job growth—14 percent
New buildings always need to be constructed somewhere. And renovations to older homes and businesses are becoming more and more popular. As a result, skilled carpenters are often able to enjoy active and engaging work in a fun variety of different locations.
- Average wage—$22.49 per hour / $46,780 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $36.90 per hour / $76,750 yearly
- Job growth—6.4 percent
Imagine getting to restore damaged cars and trucks and help them regain their former good looks. That's what being an automotive body specialist is all about. It lets you use your mind as well as your hands to fix up all kinds of inspiring driving machines.
- Average wage—$21.44 per hour / $44,590 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $33.42 per hour / $69,510 yearly
Media and Digital Arts:
Why not get paid to create visually stunning animations, special effects, or digital characters and environments? From video games to Hollywood movies, 2D and 3D artists help create the most popular forms of entertainment on the planet.
- Average wage—$33.80 per hour / $70,300 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $54.62 per hour / $113,600 yearly
Maybe you've been a big fan of on-screen storytelling your whole life. Well, who's to say you can't be part of the creative and technical process that makes memorable motion pictures and TV shows possible?
- Average wage—$38.61 per hour / $80,300 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $74.92 per hour / $155,840 yearly
Why not capitalize on your enthusiasm for popular entertainment mediums like TV and radio? The fields of sound and broadcast engineering enable technically inclined people to contribute directly to the production of memorable and/or informative television or radio programs.
- Average wage—$30.45 per hour / $63,340 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $56.99 per hour / $118,530 yearly
27. Fashion Designer
Satisfy your enthusiasm for creating new looks and fresh styles. The world of fashion thrives on the work of designers who have an original vision, a good sense of emerging trends, and plenty of creative energy.
- Average wage—$35.18 per hour / $73,180 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $60.23 per hour / $125,270 yearly
28. Theatrical Makeup Artist
What could be more invigorating than being part of the magic that occurs behind the scenes? Film, television, and live stage productions all require the talents of enthusiastic makeup artists to help transform their performers into convincing characters that reflect the needs of particular stories.
- Average wage—$32.00 per hour / $66,560 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $58.71 per hour / $122,110 yearly
Apply your creative abilities to a fun occupation that adds vibrancy and stylish functionality to the indoor spaces we all use. It's a field that often goes way beyond professional decorating.
- Average wage—$26.69 per hour / $55,510 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $43.93 per hour / $91,360 yearly
Builders and manufacturers need accurate and easy-to-understand visual schematics to produce the structures and products they specialize in. So drafters provide a vital service in many different industries.
- Average wage—$25.80 per hour / $53,660 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $39.37 per hour / $81,890 yearly
31. Graphic Designer
Have you ever wanted the power to make a big visual impact that generates many positive returns? It's something that graphic designers get to work toward every day. They have fun using their artistic talents to help communicate important and creative concepts or to make media projects interesting and user-friendly.
- Average wage—$24.83 per hour / $51,640 yearly
- Top-end pay—over $39.10 per hour / $81,320 yearly
30 Additional Jobs That Pay $15 an Hour or More
You may be surprised to learn that many other good occupations offer average wages of between $15 and $20 per hour. And they are frequently even easier to get started in than those already listed. In fact, it's possible to find jobs that pay $15 an hour with no experience or degree necessary. For example, many of the career options below require only a post-secondary certificate or diploma. And you can begin some of them with only a high school diploma or GED.
This health care occupation is one of the few jobs that start at $15 an hour for many of the people who have it. Other medical lab techs start closer to around $12 an hour and eventually earn more than $15 once they have a year or two of experience. You generally need an associate's degree or post-secondary certificate to enter this field. The job involves testing biological samples such as blood and urine in order to help physicians diagnose and treat their medical patients.
- Average wage—$19.91 per hour / $41,420 yearly
- Top-end pay—$29.23 per hour / $60,810 yearly
- Job growth—18 percent
Start repairing and changing locks, making keys, and installing safes. You generally only need a vocational certificate. In some states, you also may need to register as a professional locksmith or pass a licensing exam.
- Average wage—$19.84 per hour / $41,270 yearly
- Top-end pay—$29.73 per hour / $61,830 yearly
Help people get into better physical shape and stay that way. As one of the most active jobs that pay $15 an hour or more, this career option can enable you to more easily maintain your own fitness and overall sense of well-being. Plus, getting started usually only requires a post-secondary certificate.
- Average wage—$19.70 per hour / $40,970 yearly
- Top-end pay—$33.74 per hour / $70,180 yearly
- Job growth—8.4 percent
Many skilled tradespeople enjoy jobs that pay $15 an hour without a degree. Welders are no exception. In fact, you may not even need to go through a full apprenticeship. Many people learn how to weld through short trade school programs and keep growing their skills while on the job.
- Average wage—$19.70 per hour / $40,970 yearly
- Top-end pay—$28.85 per hour / $60,000 yearly
- Job growth—3.6 percent
Knowing how to repair and maintain cars and trucks can qualify you for $15-an-hour jobs in the automotive sector. And some auto mechanics are eventually able to double their wages while specializing in the types of vehicles they like most.
- Average wage—$19.58 per hour / $40,720 yearly
- Top-end pay—$30.45 per hour / $63,330 yearly
- Job growth—5.3 percent
Maintaining accurate medical records is essential for ensuring that people receive timely and appropriate health care. That's why professionals who code, categorize, and file medical information often earn more than $15 per hour.
- Average wage—$19.44 per hour / $40,430 yearly
- Top-end pay—$29.52 per hour / $61,400 yearly
- Job growth—15.4 percent
Professional photography requires a lot more than just taking great pictures. Factors like timing, location, advanced preparation, budgeting, and self-promotion all play major roles in achieving success. Attention to details like those is often what separates the professionals from the amateurs. But if you get the right training, then you can find jobs that pay $15 per hour or a lot more. Plus, self-employment is an option.
- Average wage—$19.37 per hour / $40,280 yearly
- Top-end pay—$34.71 per hour / $72,200 yearly
- Job growth—3 percent
Having the ability to organize and maintain an organization's employee records can give you the opportunity to earn at least $15 per hour. You might collect and compile information related to employee addresses, production numbers, absences, earnings, and other aspects that supervisors find important.
- Average wage—$18.84 per hour / $39,180 yearly
- Top-end pay—$26.52 per hour / $55,160 yearly
Companies and other organizations never have a shortage of financial transactions that need to be properly recorded. So this field consistently offers qualified people the chance to find jobs that pay 15 dollars an hour or more.
- Average wage—$18.74 per hour / $38,990 yearly
- Top-end pay—$27.84 per hour / $57,920 yearly
10. Travel Agent
Do you enjoy taking trips far away from home? Many people do. And that means the world is full of potential clients who need professional assistance with choosing and booking their vacations and getaways. The bonus is that many travel agents get to take trips themselves as part of their ongoing research.
- Average wage—$18.63 per hour / $38,750 yearly
- Top-end pay—$28.94 per hour / $60,200 yearly
11. Oil and Gas Roustabout
When it comes to jobs that pay 15 dollars an hour for 18-year-olds, this one is sometimes a popular option. After all, you don't need a degree for it. But you do frequently need to be willing to work in a remote region since the job involves assembling or repairing equipment in locations where oil or gas is drilled.
- Average wage—$18.61 per hour / $38,700 yearly
- Top-end pay—$27.52 per hour / $57,240 yearly
- Job growth—8.3 percent
12. Dental Assistant
The demand for dental services only keeps increasing as the population grows. As a result, new and existing dental clinics all over the country need qualified people to provide chairside assistance to dentists and help with basic office functions.
- Average wage—$17.75 per hour / $36,920 yearly
- Top-end pay—$24.35 per hour / $50,660 yearly
- Job growth—18.4 percent
Eyeglasses and contact lenses are already essential for millions of Americans. But as the population of seniors grows across the country, the need for those types of vision aids also keeps rising. With a short amount of training, you can become an optician who gets to help customers choose the right frames or lenses, orders those products based on their prescriptions, and ensures that they fit properly when completed.
- Average wage—$17.70 per hour / $36,820 yearly
- Top-end pay—$26.70 per hour / $55,530 yearly
- Job growth—24 percent
14. Construction Laborer
The construction industry tends to offer many opportunities for making over $15 an hour. In regions with a lot of growth and economic expansion, you may not even need much training or experience in order to earn that level of pay. A lot of jobs simply involve carrying building materials or using basic hand and power tools for routine tasks.
- Average wage—$17.57 per hour / $36,550 yearly
- Top-end pay—$29.36 per hour / $61,070 yearly
- Job growth—13 percent
15. Garbage or Recycling Collector
It may not be the most glamorous industry to work in, but many people actually enjoy working in the waste disposal sector. Plus, collecting garbage or recyclable materials from businesses or residences can pay surprisingly well. And some waste collection companies offer good employee benefits.
- Average wage—$17.48 per hour / $36,370 yearly
- Top-end pay—$28.27 per hour / $58,790 yearly
- Job growth—7 percent
Repairing motorcycles can be very satisfying work. Not only do you get to work with your hands, but you also get to use your mind as you troubleshoot problems and find appropriate solutions. And many motorcycle mechanics earn more than $15 per hour.
- Average wage—$17.42 per hour / $36,240 yearly
- Top-end pay—$26.31 per hour / $54,730 yearly
- Job growth—6 percent
In order to save time, many physicians regularly make audio recordings that include their descriptions of patient interactions as well as their thoughts about treatments and diagnoses. Those recordings must then be transcribed into written text that is accurate and grammatically correct. As someone who does those transcriptions, you may be able to find jobs that pay $15 an hour. Part-time and home-based positions are also common in this field.
- Average wage—$17.17 per hour / $35,720 yearly
- Top-end pay—$24.15 per hour / $50,230 yearly
Few jobs are as exciting or meaningful as responding to medical emergencies outside of a hospital setting. It's a role that frequently involves saving lives and attending to people who've been severely injured. That's why a lot of EMTs and paramedics earn at least $15 per hour.
- Average wage—$17.04 per hour / $35,430 yearly
- Top-end pay—$26.49 per hour / $55,110 yearly
- Job growth—24 percent
Helping people achieve healthier, more beautiful-looking skin can be a good way to make the kind of money you want. In fact, many skincare specialists earn tips in addition to their regular wages. They can find opportunities in spas, beauty salons, hair-removal clinics, and medical-esthetics clinics.
- Average wage—$16.97 per hour / $35,300 yearly
- Top-end pay—$29.49 per hour / $61,330 yearly
- Job growth—12 percent
Professionals in this type of role are found in most office settings. After all, every organization has a large variety of day-to-day details that need to be handled efficiently. So if you can help arrange meetings, schedule appointments, answer phone calls, prepare routine documents, and maintain paper or electronic files, then you may be able to land a job that pays $15 per hour or more.
- Average wage—$16.92 per hour / $35,200 yearly
- Top-end pay—$24.77 per hour / $51,520 yearly
- Job growth—2.6 percent
21. Customer Service Representative
You don't necessarily need much prior experience in this field in order to qualify for a job that pays more than $15 an hour. However, you might start at a lower wage if you haven't worked in customer service before. But since many companies have difficulty retaining good customer service reps, you stand a good chance of making a higher wage if you can stay at the same job for a few years.
- Average wage—$16.62 per hour / $34,560 yearly
- Top-end pay—$25.49 per hour / $53,030 yearly
- Job growth—10 percent
From lawnmowers to snowmobiles, all kinds of outdoor equipment and recreational vehicles have small engines that eventually require expert maintenance or repair. As a result, many small engine mechanics make good money, especially during the summer or winter months. And they are often self-employed.
- Average wage—$16.60 per hour / $34,520 yearly
- Top-end pay—$24.39 per hour / $50,740 yearly
- Job growth—5 percent
Nearly every health care setting employs administrative professionals to handle tasks such as greeting patients, maintaining records, handling phone calls, and arranging appointments. So this field often provides good-paying jobs for people who have received the appropriate training.
- Average wage—$16.50 per hour / $34,330 yearly
- Top-end pay—$23.40 per hour / $48,670 yearly
- Job growth—20.5 percent
24. Delivery Truck or Van Driver
Picking up and delivering packages throughout your community can be a good way to make at least $15 per hour, especially once you've acquired a little bit of experience. Plus, you may only need a clean driving record and a friendly personality in order to get started.
- Average wage—$16.38 per hour / $34,080 yearly
- Top-end pay—$29.01 per hour / $60,350 yearly
- Job growth—3 percent
25. Veterinary Tech
Veterinary clinics everywhere rely on the work of professionals who specialize in helping animal doctors care for pets or other creatures. As a veterinary technician or technologist, you may get to carry out diagnostic tests, administer medications, prepare animals for surgery, hold animals during exams, and perform many other important and interesting tasks.
- Average wage—$16.00 per hour / $33,280 yearly
- Top-end pay—$22.80 per hour / $47,410 yearly
- Job growth—19 percent
Every community has people who need extra assistance in dealing with life's challenges. You can become somebody who gets to help other professionals provide support to people who may be struggling with poverty, disabilities, mental health problems, substance abuse, domestic violence, or other difficult issues.
- Average wage—$15.96 per hour / $33,190 yearly
- Top-end pay—$23.83 per hour / $49,570 yearly
- Job growth—11.4 percent
Collecting blood samples from medical patients is a vital job that enables health care practitioners to make well-informed decisions. That's one reason why employment in this field is expected to keep expanding with positions that sometimes pay more than $15 an hour.
- Average wage—$15.76 per hour / $32,770 yearly
- Top-end pay—$21.73 per hour / $45,190 yearly
- Job growth—25 percent
Most doctors' offices and medical clinics employ professionals who know how to carry out routine clinical and administrative tasks. For example, a medical assistant often gets to prepare exam rooms, take patients' medical histories, and check basic vital signs. The work can also involve maintaining patients' medical records and performing other duties that keep clinics running efficiently.
- Average wage—$15.34 per hour / $31,910 yearly
- Top-end pay—$21.10 per hour / $43,880 yearly
- Job growt—23.5 percent
Having basic office and computer skills can help you land a job that pays $15 or more per hour. Many organizations need people to perform tasks like answering the phone, sending emails, ordering supplies, entering data into electronic spreadsheets, and creating simple documents using software such as Microsoft Office.
- Average wage—$15.33 per hour / $31,890 yearly
- Top-end pay—$23.34 per hour / $48,540 yearly
- Job growth—3 percent
Prescription medications are a major part of the modern health care system. As a result, pharmacies in every community depend on professionals who know how to help licensed pharmacists fill customers' prescriptions.
- Average wage—$15.23 per hour / $31,680 yearly
- Top-end pay—$21.65 per hour / $45,030 yearly
- Job growth—9.3 percent
The Importance of Finding the Right Career Path
The happier you are at work, the more successful you're likely to be in other areas of your life. Your career can be so much more than just a reliable source of good income. It can also be a major source of personal engagement and satisfaction.
After all, if you're anything like most people, you crave opportunities that make you feel energized and connected to something meaningful—something that's easy to commit to. A large survey conducted in 2014 showed that only about 31.5 percent of Americans felt engaged at work.* It's a result that confirms the real importance of choosing a path that you're truly enthusiastic about.
So don't wait any longer. Get your start right now! Simply enter your zip code below to find schools near you with quick training programs that you can get excited about!
* Gallup, website last visited on April 16, 2015.